Final Fantasy turns 35 years old in 2022. Just in case fans forgot, Square quietly launched a website dedicated to the anniversary, which spurred rumors about what the company could be doing to celebrate. Unfortunately, the website doesn’t have many clues. But there’s still plenty we do know about how Square Enix is celebrating its biggest franchise, from a celebratory website and YouTube playlists to new Final Fantasy games we can expect — or hope for. Here’s everything we know.
The anniversary homepage features a promotional logo with branding for the 35th celebrations, plus sections for the Final Fantasy Twitter feed, news feed from the Final Fantasy NA site, and two relevant games from the series: the racing game Chocobo GP and the upcoming Stranger of Paradise Final Fantasy Origin. Here’s everything we know so far in terms of how Square is celebrating the Final Fantasy 35th anniversary and news on each of the games.
When is the Final Fantasy anniversary?
The first-ever Final Fantasy game (or should I say First Fantasy game) graced the world on December 18, 1987. So its exact anniversary date is still months away.
So why now? Well, with all the updates and new releases related to the Final Fantasy series this year, Square might have thought to pull it all together into one site. More importantly, 1987 at large marks the start of the entire series. That makes 2022 a vital year for celebrating the series at large far beyond simply the first game.
Square Enix Music Channel
In addition to the Final Fantasy 35th anniversary website, Square Enix launched a YouTube channel dedicated to its music from its games. Notably, it compiled playlists for each Final Fantasy game from Final Fantasy I all the way to the Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers expansion. Square also uploaded soundtracks for other games like those in the SaGa, Mana, and Chrono series. Even lesser-known IPs, like the mobile game SINoAlice, received their own playlist.
Square hasn’t directly addressed why it created the channel only now or what they plan to do with it beyond posting official soundtrack music for its games.
Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin
Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin will soon be the newest addition to the series. Square announced it last year during E3 2021, where the protagonist quickly became a meme because of his hatred for “Chaos” and how often he mentioned it.
Final Fantasy Origin is special in the sense that it takes inspiration from all the Final Fantasy games before it. Director Daisuke Inoue said as much in an interview posted on the Square Enix blog, where he explained how the team alluded to locations from past games in the game’s dungeons. Whether or not the game explores meta commentary celebrating the series at large remains to be seen, but it certainly seems possible.
Final Fantasy Origin launches for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S on March 15, 2022. Thankfully, this Final Fantasy game doesn’t take captives in the console war. As of the latest PlayStation State of Play, it also has its third and final demo up before its official release.
Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2
It’s the Final Fantasy series’ 35th anniversary, but it’s also Final Fantasy VII’s 25th. During an anniversary event dedicated to Final Fantasy VII, producer Yoshinori Kitase spoke about Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 2 and said to expect details in the next 12 months. It was January 2022 at the time.
“We just started the 25th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII, so we want to celebrate and get fans excited, so within the next 12 months, we want to share some information,” Kitase said (translation via VGC). “Look forward to more information!”
Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 2 will roughly follow the plotline of the original game after Cloud and his companions leave Midgar. Square revealed that Part 2 was already in development in 2019 before the release of the first game. However, it doesn’t seem to be close to finishing.
2022 isn’t the release window but the year we can expect the next significant update on its progress. We’ll have to wait until later in the year to hear more about when it will be ready.
Final Fantasy XVI
Square Enix hasn’t given a significant update on Final Fantasy XVI since December 2021, when producer Naoki Yoshida said Covid-19 delays meant the next update he could share would be in spring 2022. It wasn’t mentioned in the recent Japanese developer-focused PlayStation State of Play, so it seems like fans will need to wait a little longer to hear more about it.
It does seem plausible that FFXVI might be released before the end of 2022, but the longer time goes on, the less likely that seems. In any case, we’ll probably have a better idea by the middle of the year.
We’ll update this post as we hear more about Square Enix’s anniversary plans.